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City changes speed limits in four areas

Officials determine proper speed for six other areas

Posted: November 24, 2009 10:42 p.m.
Updated: November 25, 2009 4:55 a.m.
 
The City Council tweaked speed limits on four sections of roads in Santa Clarita on Tuesday night and added new speed limits in six other spots.

The changes will be posted over the next couple of months and will cost the city about $2,500 to install, said City Traffic Engineer Andrew Yi.

The new speed limits cannot be enforced until they have been posted by the city, said Santa Clarita’s Senior Traffic Engineer Ian Pari.

Two sections of road will be decreased by 5 mph — Placerita Canyon Road east past 12th Street, and Golden Triangle Road between Centre Pointe Parkway and Golden Oak Road.

Another two sections of road will be increased by 5 mph — at Aurora Drive between Newhall Ranch Road and Kelly Johnson Parkway, and Golden Triangle Road between Rainbow Glen Drive and Ruether Avenue.

City workers will also add signs to six stretches of road that currently do not have posted speed limits.

The new speed limits are the result of a 2009 engineering and traffic survey completed on Nov. 10.

Engineers spent between one and two hours observing the amount of traffic driving through each of the 10 sections of road to determine an appropriate speed limit.

Engineers used radar to determine how fast 80 percent of drivers were going, and set the speed limit to maintain the speed of traffic, Yi said.  

City staff also reviewed information on the roads’ collision history and rate to determine the final speed limit, he said.

Speed limits are not intended to restrict how fast people drive and, generally, doesn’t affect peoples driving behavior, Pari said.  

About 85 percent of drivers drive at safe speeds, he said.

Speed limits allow sheriff’s deputies to easily identify the 15 percent of drivers who are driving recklessly.

By posting speed limits, sheriff’s deputies will be able to enforce speed limits by using radar guns on cars driving past a stationary patrol car. Without speed limits, deputies have to follow cars until they can determine if the driver is driving recklessly.

All speed limit changes have been reviewed and approved by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

The last time speed limits were adjusted was after the city received a traffic survey in 2005. Traffic survey’s are done about once every five years.    

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